My first QSO on 40M!

Very excited, having started a chat on RedditNet IRC Channel about my concerns of 10W usage on HF, plenty of people stepped in with ideas for me to try.

I then got some very nice guidance on how to use FT8 from G7VRD and how to use WSJT-X.

Before long i was happily receiving signals via the DX Commander and into my Kenwood ! I was really amazed to get to this stage because of the amount of work in getting the mast and radio setup.

I then set about hooking up my XGGComms USB Digitalmode unit. This does CAT control and also plugs into the ACC2 port, which carries audio. I hooked up a simple USB soundcard to the mac as they no longer have ‘lne in’ after Thunderbolt replaced audio in ports.

With that, and some jiggling around of configs, I setup Flrig and WSJT-X. Was now able to control my radio from my computer and receive signals !

After listening and observing for a while, i got the courage to think about transmitting. I checked out the excellent Essex Ham website on FT8 basic operation, then took the plunge !

Sure enough, I got my first call !

151500 Tx 503 ~ CQ M7ALU IO90
151515 13 0.1 503 ~ M7ALU EA1AGP IN73
151530 Tx 503 ~ EA1AGP M7ALU +13
151545 14 0.1 503 ~ M7ALU EA1AGP R-12
151615 12 0.1 503 ~ M7ALU EA1AGP R-12
151634 Tx 503 ~ EA1AGP M7ALU RR73
151645 14 0.1 503 ~ M7ALU EA1AGP 73
151715 14 0.1 503 ~ ALAN TNX 73
151739 Tx 503 ~ EA1AGP M7ALU 73

Checking on PSK Reporter I can see that I was reaching well into Europe with just 10W of power ! I was really amazed and happy that all the work was worth it, but a big thanks again to G7VRD !